Nowadays automatic transmission vehicles are getting popular, with ease to drive and improved mileage. People are preferring to buy automatic transmission. But when it comes to real drivers, they choose manual transmission.
Today we are going to discuss whether it is okay to skip gears while driving a manual transmission?
Many regular experience drivers tend to do this, they skip gears. They will skip the second gear and switch from first to third or skip fourth and switch from fifth to third. They tend to do this in upshifting and downshifting. And yes it is okay to skip gears as long as you are matching the revs.
When you are upshifting let’s say from second to fourth, remember to release the clutch slowly so that the revs can drop, if you release the clutch quickly you will feel lurch. There is a lurch because your vehicle wheels and engine are trying to match speed. This might wear your clutch more and can affect your car balance. While in upshifting it is okay to skip gears as long as you allow the revs to drop, the only issue is you will lose pick up, because you are on higher gear and the engine revs are low. Actually it is beneficial in city traffic as you will save fuel and the wear is not that high.
But in downshift, it is very important to rev match. For example, if you’re shifting from fifth to third on a highway trying to bring up the revs to match with a lower gear. If you don’t match the revs you can upset the balance of your car and even lock up the driving wheels (Front or rear depending on FWD or RWD). You are also going to wear your clutch off because you are asking the clutch which is spinning at a high-speed to match the engine which is spinning at a low-speed. That’s why you need to match both speeds for proper balance.
What about skipping gears from a standstill?
It is advised to start in first gear, but if you start in the second gear you are again going to wear your clutch off. This time it is because when you start in first gear you can release your clutch around 8-12 kmph, but if you start in the second gear you have to take it to higher speed to release your clutch around 15-20 kmph. Because to release the clutch you must have a higher speed according to the gear. It is okay to start in second in slippery conditions though, where you need more traction.
In short, it is okay to skip gears if you are comfortable with it and, otherwise do not do it. Even if you’re doing it do not do downshifting, it is more harmful to your car.
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Also published on Medium.